HPD, Forrest County 12 NET Metro Narcotics agreement renewed

HPD, Forrest County 12 NET Metro Narcotics agreement renewed
Source: WDAM

FORREST COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - City of Hattiesburg and Forrest County officials have renewed an agreement furthering the existence of the 12 NET Metro Narcotics team.

The team, which previously was made up of Forrest County, Hattiesburg Police, Petal Police and the Perry County Sheriff's Department now only operates with two agencies. Hattiesburg and Forrest County, after the other two agencies pulled out in 2016.

Since then, the inter-local agreement has been building cases and making arrests.

"The 12th Circuit Court Narcotics Enforcement Team, known as "12 NET," serves the citizens of this community in the fight against drug related crimes," said Forrest-Perry County District Attorney Patricia Burchell.

Burchell's office handles the prosecution of the cases developed and followed by 12 NET.

"Anytime you can share information, share intelligence about problems that multiple communities face, not just one, especially when it comes to drugs and narcotics and opioids, that's a good thing," said Hattiesburg Mayor Toby Barker.

The inter-local agreement is nothing new, but Mayor Barker said it is something that's vital.

"The 12 NET program is something that we've been doing for years, the city council just formalized that partnership, which I think strengthens it as we go forward to really try and partner in share information, share intelligence and really try to rectify an issue that effects all of our communities," Barker said.

Here's a breakdown of seized and forfeitures:

12 NET INITIATED CASES:

  • 10% to the Twelfth Circuit District Attorney's Office
  • 10% to Forrest County for supplemental pay of the Asset Forfeiture Officer 40% to 12 NET
  • 20% each to the Forrest County Sheriff's Department and Hattiesburg Police Department

HATTIESBURG INITIATED CASES:

  • 10% to the Twelfth Circuit District Attorney's Office
  • 10% to Forrest County for supplemental pay of the Asset Forfeiture Officer 40%to 12 NET
  • 40% to Hattiesburg Police Department

FORREST COUNTY INITIATED CASES:

  • 10% to the Twelfth Circuit District Attorney's Office
  • 10% to Forrest County for supplemental pay of the Asset Forfeiture Officer 40%to 12 NET
  • 40% to Forrest County Sheriff's Department

All 12 NET gun seizures and Hattiesburg Police Department gun seizures shall be turned over to the Forrest County Sheriff's Department to be sold at public auction, with all proceeds therefrom going to 12 NET to be placed in the 12 NET operating fund. All 12 NET vehicle seizures shall be turned over to Forrest County, Mississippi, to be utilized by 12 NET in its operations, or to be sold at public auction with all proceeds therefrom going to 12 NET to be placed in the 12 NET operating fund. All other seizures shall go to the seizing agency, which shall then be responsible for all maintenance, insurance and other costs associated with the property.

"The joint efforts of these entities in the sharing resources and information is the primary advantage of such an inter-local endeavor," Burchell said.  "This office supports 12 NET and looks forward to our continuing relationship with 12 NET in the prosecution of all drug related felonies."

"The more that we can share information that we can work together, the better we will do, the better all of our community will be," Barker said.